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New technologies - Home automation is successful!
New technologies - Home automation is successful!


Assistive technology is the key to autonomy
Assistive technology is the key to autonomy
Edu Carvalho

With this module, learners will have a better understanding of what assistive devices are and how they can be used to impact and benefit the lives of people with disabilities.

Overall, what are assistive technologies?

Assistive technologies are technologies that cover systems and services related to the provision of assistive products and services. They are of a different nature and can help either in the person's environment via home automation, or directly on the person via technological systems to ensure better hearing, easier movement, etc.

Technical aids make it possible to maintain or improve people's mobility and autonomy, thus contributing to their well-being and facilitating their living environment.

These technologies can be appropriated quite easily by carers accompanying people in difficulty and in this way offer new possibilities in the context of housing and inclusive sharing of housing.

Assistive technologies can help elderly and disabled people in their daily lives to better understand space, to move around, to catch objects, to avoid traps in the home, to gain movement by acting directly on household utensils using a remote control system.

The possibilities are becoming numerous and must be both integrated into the new homes and easy to use.

We will mention the main families that are very useful for carers and, in a way, fun for disabled and/or elderly people.

1.         The interactive tablet: today there are interactive tablets for the elderly that are fairly simple to use and bring real advantages to the daily life of the elderly. Although still expensive, the tablet is the "Swiss Army knife" of tele-assistance for people with limited autonomy. It offers

- The possibility of communicating with relatives either in writing or using camera systems;

- The possibility of integrating the medical file of the person being assisted and of having medical personnel better able to organise themselves,

- The possibility of integrating the medical file of the person being cared for and of coordinating the medical personnel who are better able to organise themselves, - The possibility of having a remote monitoring system that allows the emergency teams to intervene rapidly. This remote assistance system can become a fun option for the people being helped, while at the same time providing security and facilitating daily life.

2.         The mini smart phone.

This inexpensive option is very interesting because it allows several services to be set up to support the daily life of the person:

For example, the person can be directly connected to :

o To the emergency services for any problem occurring at home,

o A 24/7 listening centre (a kind of toll-free number);

o To services involved in social life: booking train tickets or taxis.

This device can also have a GPS that allows the family to locate the person, and an alarm when the person leaves a defined area. This alarm system can be an option to reassure people when they are alone and/or sometimes far from the family.

The system can use programmable buttons to contact relatives in advance.

1.         Home automation systems are growing and becoming more and more popular. Not only to secure homes, but to help people programme actions, limit movement for people with walking difficulties and ensure comfort in the daily life of dependent people.

Centralized controls allow today to have fun while being efficient for daily life. They are real dashboards, rather like the equipment in vehicles. The person being assisted can :

- Open and close shutters, doors, windows, etc. remotely;

- Be warned of a water or gas leak;

- Turn on paths or areas that require it, etc.

The home will be controlled entirely from a computer, a tablet or an application on a mobile phone, even if you are outside.

More futuristically, the "life helper" robot is capable of interacting with a home automation system.

It will be able to :

- Detect possible dangers;

- Alert relatives in case of a fall;

- Order groceries from a dedicated platform that will deliver directly to the home;

- Organise a videoconference with doctors;

- Remind the person of a certain number of operations to be carried out when the carer is not present; keep hydrated, take their medication, etc.

Liens source : https://www.who.int/fr/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/assistive-technology



How do you want them to do it? 

For example; Will they work alone or in groups? What are the individual steps they will take to complete the task?

Direct them to resources you have included in the module (Resources section) to help them complete the task.

Use text and bulleted/numeric lists.

The process to be proposed to enable carers to accompany their loved ones to assistive technologies will be based on a principle of ownership and facilitation, but it will be necessary for carers to have a few things to think about before they start:

- Ascertain the needs, preferences and concerns of the elderly and/or disabled person

- Emphasise how these technologies are not objects of dependence but of autonomy, and therefore useful and accessible for the daily life of the person being cared for,

- Think about the most appropriate technology for the person and his/her condition in order to avoid rejection,

- Of course, use the resources available to guide the choices (see resources)Pour accomplir le travail d’appropriation, de diffusion, d’explicitation, d’aide à l’utilisation de technologies nouvelles d’assistance pour les aidants qui auront à agir pour les personnes peu autonomes, nous pouvons orienter la dynamique de la façon suivante.

  • To make carers think individually about the different support systems,
  • - To be able to classify them according to criteria (yet to be defined: cost, ease of use, learning, etc.),
  • - In small groups, have them list the advantages and disadvantages of the different systems and prioritise one,

- In small groups, have them list the advantages and disadvantages of the different systems and prioritise one, Learners will go on the Internet to find existing technologies and make their own representations (see suggested resources below).



The learner learnt to research the subject of assistive technologies and to understand their different degrees of interest and usability.

They were able to search for documentary resources and U Tube videos that developed and provided elements of knowledge on the subject.

The learner was able to better perceive the relationship between the difficulties of a person with little autonomy and the help provided by a technology.

They were able to project themselves into the home and identify the advantages of technology and home automation.

They were able to compare their experiences with other participants and discuss current and future practices.

The participants could imagine carrying out simulations by going, for example, to a home automation fair or a carers' fair or to retailers...an idea to be pursued.


Learning Outcomes

  • Knowing how to identify relevant assistive technologies for the people being assisted
  • To know how to find out about the resources available and how to use them in everyday life
  • To show the advantages and disadvantages of the different existing systems
  • To make the appropriation of assistance systems fun,
  • Convince people of the usefulness and benefits of these technologies

Knowledge acquired

  • Knowledge of existing technologies for home assistance,
  • Knowledge of the relevance of their use

Skills acquired

  • Carers will have practical and operational skills to choose the best assistive technology according to the need of the person being cared for.
  • They will be able to test and simulate actions from the available technologies…

Competences acquired

  • The participants will have to reflect on the impact of technologies on their safety, comfort and autonomy
  • They will use technology as a social accelerato
  • Caregivers will promulgate innovations and technologies as a support to positivise



Assistive Technologies
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Understanding Assistive Technology: Simply Said